We had little time to bask in the glory of becoming All Ireland champions because with only a five day turn around we were faced with the task of facing Buttevant in round two of this year’s junior A hurling championship. This game took place last Friday night in Charleville and we were still short the services of a few important players with Haulie, Jonathan Dennehy, Jerome Fitzgerald and Eammon Fitzgerald all out for various reasons.
Before the game a constant downpour would make playing conditions very tough and this was very evident during the game as both teams made mistakes. Paul Burke opened our account with a nice point after 3 minutes but Buttevant leveled soon after but from here until the end of the half we took control of the game. Jamie added two frees to see us lead 0-3 to 0-1 before a great move involving Darren Roche and Paul Burke saw the ball break for Kenneth Barry who goaled from close range.
This goal gave us some breathing space and from here to half time both sides swapped two points each with ours coming from two Jamie frees. Our back line were again outstanding in the first half and continued this into the second period giving the Buttevant forwards no time or space on the ball. We started the second half where we left off and great pressure going forward resulted in a number of frees being conceded by Buttevant and Jamie Sheedy duly obliged by punishing these frees.
Some great work by Rob McHugh and Brian Sheedy led to another Paul Burke point midway through the second half and all Buttevant could muster were two points in this half. We finished strongly and were able to see the game out and progress to the next round where we will meet Doneraile. We have a number of injury worries before this game and lost the services of Brian and Colman O’Reilly along with Darren Roche in the game last Friday night, hopefully all these guys along with Haulie Burke will be fit and ready for the game on the 24th.
Team: Declan Fitzgibbon, James Hayes, Eoin McHugh, Alan Sheedy, Brian Sheedy, Sean Lynch, Eoin O’Regan, Rob McHugh, Colman O’Reilly, Jamie Sheedy(0-9), Darren Roche, Brian O’Reilly, Kenneth Barry(1-0), Richard Burke, Paul Burke(0-2) Subs: Padraig Fitzgerald for James Hayes(inj), Niall Barry for Brian O’Reilly(inj), Vincent Burke for Darren Roche(inj).